Trumpton Creator’s Family Accuses Radiohead of Copyright Breach Over "Burn the Witch" Video
May 16, 2016 09:30 PM EDT
The family of "Trumpton" mastermind Gordon Murray has accused Radiohead of copyright infringement over the animated video for their lead single "Burn the Witch."
According to The Guardian, William Mollett, the son-in-law of Gordon Murray -who created the children's TV show Trumptonshire trilogy -said, Radiohead should have sought their consent as they now consider what they did as "tarnishing of the brand."
"It is not something we would have authorised," Mollett said. "We consider that there is a breach of copyright and we are deciding what to do next."
Directed by Chris Hopewell, the "Burn the Witch" video was allegedly based on the series, "Trumpton", "Chigley" and "Camberwick Green" which aired on BBC between 1966 and 1969. It is reportedly similar to the stop-motion animation style of the show and features characters that seemingly resemble Trumptonshire's, including Windy Miller, the mayor of Trumpton, and the florist, Mrs. Cobbit.
While it bears a visual resemblance to the British show, Exclaim reports that its tone is very different. Unlike Trumpton's cheerful nature, given it's a children's series about an idyllic town; Radiohead's music video features an unsettling story of "human sacrifice".
Per animator Virpi Kettu, the footage is a comment on European fears about the refugee crisis.
Mollett expressed his hesitation in showing the said footage to his father-in-law, saying "Gordon would be appalled."
Following the video's release on May 3, Mollett told Pitchfork he was not aware of it. Unfortunately, the band's representative was not available when the outlet was supposed to ask whether they had a consent from the Trumptonshire rights holders to make such video. Meanwhile, Radiohead's publicist gave no comment regarding the allegation.
Apart from the popular TV show, "Burn the Witch" has also been compared to the 1973 horror flick "The Wicker Man". There is no indication, however, that the band would face the same allegation from the people behind the said film.